Boris Popovic played football in the interest of PSV, but also relieved a very young Cercle fan from trauma: “This gives me great satisfaction”

©  Isosport

From a mercenary from Monaco, the Serbian defender Boris Popovic became a permanent fixture at Cercle in almost two seasons. It even earned him the interest of PSV. But Popovic also integrated perfectly into Bruges on a social level. He even helped a boy get rid of an anxiety syndrome and inferiority complex.

Koen Verdruye

Where football and social interests can find each other. The parents of 5-year-old Téo have known all about it since this summer. Téo was teased, pushed until he was on the floor, called a loser – bullying behavior, that is. And that only because he played football at Cercle Brugge. “Suddenly we had another child in the house,” mother Katrijn Casier testifies on social media.

“We cried when we heard what happened to him and had to send him to a child psychologist. There it turned out that he had a trauma, an anxiety syndrome. We mainly tried to do fun things to put it out of everyone’s mind. And so we went to the Cercle fan day at Decathlon. Téo could be convinced to participate in the penalty cup, which he promptly won. Afterwards he reacted very enthusiastically and could not keep silent about one of the players, a certain Boris. We are more familiar with basketball and don’t know all those players, but it turned out to be Boris Popovic,” says the mother. Just like our Teo, Boris also speaks French and he had taken care of him. At home we suddenly got another Téo. He blossomed and was happy again. Shortly afterwards he was also able to walk with the players on the field and after the match he only had eyes for Boris and shouted his name. Recently my husband bumped into Boris Popovic in town and Téo immediately recognized him and posed for a photo with him. For Téo and also for us, Boris is now a hero, because he gave us another happy child.”

Little Teo and his big friend Boris Popovic. — ©  rr


Boris Popovic (22) laughs when he hears the story. “I helped that little boy on that fan day, gave him some confidence and some tips as well. I gave him some courage and you saw him grow like that. It’s fun when fans look up to you, but even more fun when you can help them and make them happy. When I see that little boy at the games, I always try to talk to him for a moment and then you see him beaming. That is a fantastic feeling and that also gives me a lot of satisfaction.”

Just as Cercle’s current economic boom and his personal development make Popovic happy. “This is the year of confirmation for both the team and myself. We have a young team – by far the youngest in Europe – and we want to achieve our goal, which is to finish in the top eight. We have been working hard for this for months and everyone believes that we can make it. We all have that one goal in mind and our entire focus is also on Cercle. PSV? Nice to hear, but I’m not into that. I also had no contact with PSV or other clubs. My broker might, but that’s his job, I do mine and he’s on the field. And very occasionally next door if I can help someone, as was the case with little Téo.”

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